Thursday Numbers

Defeat is not the worst of failures. Not to have tried is the true failure. – George Edward Woodberry

Welcome to “Thursday Numbers!” In case you’re a first-time visitor, this is the weekly column where I take a look at the numbers that are in the news (in descending order) and provide commentary sometimes sprinkled with sarcasm.

This week’s topics include cash to Iran, state revenue concerns, state liquor stores, Gianforte donations, unemployment, Home Depot in Missoula, the Montana GOP invoice, Bullock’s airfare, Obama’s commutations, the Fox News presidential poll, and much more…


The Wall Street Journal reported that the Obama administration secretly organized an airlift of $400 million worth of cash to Iran that coincided with the January release of four Americans detained in Tehran.

Republicans contend the cash was a ransom payment, which the Obama Administration denies.


Republican Fred Thomas and his sidekick GOP Chairman Jeff Essmann held a “sky is falling” press conference, where Thomas said the state could end up with $141 million less than anticipated and have an ending fund balance of about $100 million and not the $300 million that’s coveted by state officials. (Great Falls Tribune)

Maybe this is a stretch, but I think the real reason for this press conference was to help elect Republican Greg Gianforte as governor.

I’m yawning here…


District Judge Greg Pinski has ordered the state to pay $14,722,297.88 to a group of liquor store owners who were short-changed by a discount reimbursement law deemed unconstitutional. (Great Falls Tribune)


I’ve written before that I think State Liquor stores should go the way of the dinosaurs. It’s really an antiquated way to sell distilled spirits. The state would probably make more money from taxes if they allowed distilled spirits to be sold where beer/wine is sold. There would be an increase in sales for sure.


Republican candidate for Montana governor, Greg Gianforte, has donated $1.1 million to his campaign. (AP)

I can think of many things to spend a million dollars on, but becoming governor did not make my list.


That’s how many people filed new claims for unemployment last week. (USDOL)


That’s how many shares a Facebook post received (as of this morning) that accused Home Depot in Missoula (MT) of firing an employee who was away fighting forest fires.


The manager at Home Depot said the person had worked at Home Depot as a seasonal employee and was among several seasonal employees recently let go as scheduled. He remains hirable according to the manager. (Missoulian)



The Chairman of the Montana Republican Party, Jeff Essmann, called on Governor Steve Bullock to fully reimburse taxpayers for using the State plane to attend the Paul McCartney concert. The cost is $15,255.00.

Essmann also included an invoice to help Bullock with the bill. You can view the “invoice” HERE.

I love politics…


That’s how much Governor Steve Bullock’s campaign paid the state for airfare according to the latest election finance reports. (Missoulian)

This has been the big issue that has dogged the Bullock campaign. Nothing else seems to get much traction.


That’s how many inmates had their sentences commuted by President Obama this week. In what will send the righties over the edge, the White House noted that it was the largest single-day batch of commutations since at least 1900. (The Hill)



A new Fox News national Presidential poll shows Democrat Hillary Clinton with 44%, Republican Donald Trump with 35%, and Libertarian Gary Johnson with 12%. (Real Clear Politics)

The 12% for Johnson is noteworthy.


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4 thoughts on “Thursday Numbers

  1. We have had twelve years of Democratic Governors. After that long the party in power gets careless. Someone says,” let’s take the state plane and fly over to Paul McCartney concert”, and there is no one around to say, “bad idea”.

    • Dave – Thanks. He should probably reimburse the state for it to silence it. I’m sure some friend with deep pockets would help. -JmB

  2. 400,000 You should also note that it was pallets of cash in Euros and Swiss Francs ordered by the administration. It was flown in an unmarked cargo plane by the US military direct to Tehran…and it is not just Republicans that are upset, many Democrats are too. The Iranians received the money the day they released the hostages…you might want to fins a better word then “contend”…

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